February 03, 2006

Danny Rubinstein: Even Zionism has its boundaries

A few people have sent me this interview between Keshev - the Centre for the Protection of Democracy in Israel - and veteran Israeli journalist, Danny Rubinstein. I've been trying to resist posting on it because it contains a certain bombshell that looks like a far flung conspiracy theory but it comes from one of Israel's best known and well respected journalists. Rubinstein is also from strongly zionist stock. He didn't just wash up on the shore. So what is this bombshell?
In my personal estimation, based on several findings and testimonies, we poisoned Arafat. Writing that today seems like an exercise in futility: 'those Arabs, with their imagination, and their conspiracy theories, etc.'. It is so opposed to our narrative and so identified with theirs, that I can't put that in. I think that's true for today's media in general: it's careful not to target sacred cows. In the end, all the systems adopt an approach held by part or most of the establishment.
What difference does it make anyway? Arafat was incarcerated in a bombed out basement for (I think it was) three years. He was old anyway. Why poison him? Principle perhaps? They couldn't allow him the dignity (dignity? huh!) of dying of natural causes. And of course Rubinstein could be wrong but he certainly doesn't go in for sensationalism. He drops other bombshells too.
I grew up in what was known as Working Israel, in a very Zionistic environment. And now the post-Zionist era is upon us, and you say, something has to be changed. The state of Israel exists, and needs to be a normal state. We have to start rethinking the Law of Return, the Citizenship Law… these are things that are hard for me to grasp. But they are beginning to trickle into me, from a journalistic standpoint as well. Maybe this is not just the beginning, these things have already become quite established. Even Zionism has its boundaries. The Law of Return needs to be restructured, because the Arabs have rights in this land too.
"Arabs have rights in this land too." Arabs from this land, or just in this land? The Law of Return must go. But what of the right to return? Arafat's death was a big deal for sure but the abolition of the Law of Return coupled with the right to return would change everything.

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